Pregnancy #2 Weeks 20-24

21 weeks

                                 21 weeks

And here we are, finishing up 24 weeks. The second trimester is cruising right along very smoothly and I have zero gripes or complaints. So much so, this is the last pic I took…21 weeks-Whops! I’m savoring every minute of this because I know that in just a few weeks that can, and probably will, change.
My energy levels are still relatively high/normal. I’m really motivated to get the baby’s room organized and redecorated. I’ve been carrying bins of clothes down from our attic to see what baby girl #2 will need. It’s nice that we’ll get to reuse a lot of stuff, but because Madelyn was born in August and this baby will be born in the Fall, the first few month’s of clothes and sizes don’t match up with the seasons. So I’ll be doing some shopping and rummaging in the next few weeks to see what I can find. I was able to score 2 Aden & Anais blankets at a rummage for $6! A pack of 4 runs about $35 in the store.  Since not really much is new in the last few weeks of this pregnancy, I want to talk about being “Team Green” until the very end versus finding out the baby’s sex halfway through.
I’ve been fortunate enough to experience it both ways. When I was pregnant with Madelyn, we (or rather I) elected not to find out. Hubs wanted to find out but I won that battle and we waited until she was born. Best. Decision. Ever. Now I know what that surprise feels like and there’s a lot of stuff that we can reuse because the every day stuff (sleep sacks,towels, blankets,etc…)are all gender neutral.
Common questions I received while being Team Green: How are you going to decorate the nursery? How do you not want to know?! You’re going to have so much green & yellow! Last one’s not really a question, but you get the point. I LOVED Madelyn’s room. I had a lot more time during my first pregnancy to get quite a few DIY projects done. This time around? Not so much. And OF COURSE I wanted to know! It was killing me but fun at the same time. I had one person tell me I was carrying this way so that meant I was having a boy and then I’d turn around and someone else would tell me I was carrying another way that meant girl. I got more joy out of watching everyone else try to guess what she was. Another reason I didn’t want to know because I felt as adults, it’s the one last “good surprise” left in life. It was one surprise I couldn’t ruin for myself and I liked that.
When we found out we were expecting baby #2 husband right away said that we were finding out. I was reluctant, but I knew it wasn’t fair to hold out again when I knew that he really wanted to find out. In marriage, there’s this thing called compromise…it got the best of me and I gave in. I said to him that I didn’t want to know at the 20 week anatomy scan with the ultrasound tech, that if we were finding out it had to be with our family in a fun and exciting way. Enter silly string party.
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You guys, thinking of that day makes my eyes well up with tears. The emotions I felt in a matter of minutes was insane. I went from nervous to calm, to excited, to happy that everyone could be there to know that we were having another girl. It was amazing and fun and I wouldn’t take that back for anything. We got to hug our family right away and they got to share in the moment with us.
Some pro’s about finding out midway through
Being able to prepare!! Going through all of Madelyn’s stuff and purging what we’re not going to use, has been wonderful. We’ve also slightly altered the room colors. The old room was painted a turquoise color and was staying that way regardless. If we found out baby was a boy we would add in more navy blues and greens. Now that we found out she’s a girl, we are adding in coral and gold. I can’t wait to see how it all comes together.
Deciding on a name. We’ve never had an issue coming up with a girl name, but boy names are always an issue for us. Thankfully, we will never have to have that argument.
Preparing Madelyn for a sister. I can’t wait to see these two together. We keep asking her for name ideas, even though baby 2’s name has been decided. The one thing we are keeping secret until the birth. Even from (especially from) Madelyn.
Cons of Waiting until the End
Even though I’m so happy that we were completely surprised the first time around, there were some cons that came along with it.
Not knowing the whole 9 months. I was pretty confident that Madelyn was a girl from the very start. I had several dreams where she was a girl. I just had a gut instinct. And then all of my friends started finding out they were having girls and I thought there was no way we ALL were having girls. So I became undecided again. I drove myself nuts.
Texting our family the news. My mom and sister were at the hospital when Madelyn was born so they knew right away at 3:29am she was a girl. We had to wait until a more reasonable hour to send people a text letting them know she had arrived. This time around my friends called and congratulated us and we were able to share the news with our family and see their reactions.
The moment you find out. Maybe because I was just so tired and stunned at what I just did, when hubs told me she was a girl, I didn’t have the same reaction as I did when we found out via silly string. I was just happy that our baby was here and that she was healthy and that I was done giving birth. Nothing else mattered.
I thought that finding out the baby’s sex during pregnancy would make me less excited to meet her/give birth etc. But that’s not the case AT ALL. I think of her every day. How she will look. Will she get my curly hair? Will her eyes stay blue or will they turn green like Madelyn’s? Will she have more olive-toned skin? Things like that. I think of her personality. If she will be quieter/calmer than Madelyn? Will Madelyn be super bossy and will this little lady stand up to her sister? She’s quite active in there, but I remember Madelyn being non-stop in utero-a personality trait that carried on into toddler life. I’m just as scared for labor/delivery as I was the first time around. Maybe even more so because I know what I’m getting myself into. I keep thinking that the L&D will be the same as last time, but that I can clearly not be the case. In the next few weeks, I’m going to brush up on laboring techniques, as I’m hoping to another all natural birth.
Moms out there, where you totally surprised or did you find out the sex of the baby? Mom’s of two or more children, were your labor and deliveries the similar or completely different? 

Our Baby Reveal Party

A few weeks ago, we had a baby reveal party with our family and if you follow me on Instagram, you already know that baby C is a….GIRL!
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We are so excited and thrilled to be blessed with another baby girl this fall. Since finding out, one of the top questions from people’s mouth is “Another girl, are you excited?” Followed by, “How does Larry feel about having all girls?” We are both very excited. What matters to us most is that the baby & mom are healthy. Yes, it would’ve been nice to have one of each but at the same time I’m so close to my sister, I really wanted Madelyn to have that special relationship in her life and I knew this would be the only shot at that since we both agreed that no matter the outcome, two kids is our max.
We had our ultrasound on a Wednesday. Baby girl was breech so the tech told us right away that sometimes they can’t get a great look down there because of the position. Everything looked healthy but she wasn’t cooperating to get a great profile picture, which should’ve been our first clue we were having another girl! She kept arching and stretching her head back. Madelyn was the same way, moving around so much that we couldn’t get a good picture. But when it came time for the tech to get a look at the “goods” she said the baby moved her legs and she was able to clearly see what we were having.
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 Hubs and I looked away from the screen when she was in that area so we had no clue. The tech wrote the baby’s sex on a thank you note I had planned on giving to my friend who was helping us out the following day. She wrote it and then sealed it up. That night, hubs went to work while that envelope sat in my purse. I was so tempted to open it so many times I had to put it in my car to forget about it! I’m notorious for ruining surprises for myself.
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 That Friday, I went out of town with my girlfriends for the weekend, which was a nice distraction to try to get my mind off of it. However, Saturday night all I did was toss and turn because I knew on Sunday we would know what we were having. I can’t remember the last time I was so excited about something that I couldn’t sleep. I felt like a little kid at Christmas again.
That Sunday evening we had our close family over. Larry grilled brats, we had some sides, and of course there was cake. I decided it would be fun to find out via silly string. I had thought about cupcakes/cake but figured Madelyn would get a kick out of silly string…

062815_Campbell_007To pull off the silly string reveal, I went to the dollar store and purchased 11 cans of pink and 11 cans blue (for the number of people we were having). I gave all the supplies to my friend, told her how I wanted them wrapped and said to keep the unused silly string until I saw her afterward so I could return whatever we didn’t use(sidenote-Dollar Tree only does even exchanges, not returns). She was nice enough to deliver the cans to our house on Sunday afternoon when I got home from Door County and even made this cute little box to put them in.

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After everyone got there, we ate dinner and did the reveal afterward. I was waiting for my friend, Jenna, to come over and take pictures since I figured everyone else would be preoccupied. I really wanted someone there to capture the moment. Jenna works with us and is starting up her own photography business so she was the perfect person to ask.

She was able to get some really great moments and definitely captured the emotional roller coaster it was. I was so nervous the whole day. Why? I’m not really sure. It was probably more excitement than anything. Madelyn, Larry and I stood there as we faced our family and I explained on the count of three everyone shoots their silly string.

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The initial reaction when something is coming at you is to close your eyes.

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When I was finally able to open them and saw it was pink I was like “Oh it’s pink. Pink means we’re having a girl. Madelyn you’re having a sister!” As soon as those words came out of my mouth I started crying.

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I was so excited and after I hugged my husband and daughter, I gave my sister a big hug. I was crying out of excitement for having another daughter as well as having our family there with us to share in the moment this time around. It was so much fun and something I will never forget.

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Along with the silly string reveal we had a few other fun things at the party. We took votes on whether the baby would be a boy or girl. It was pretty much split until we asked Madelyn whose vote is in yellow :-)

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We also needed help naming the baby and asked for both boy an girl suggestions. And then we did an old wives tales symptoms thing. I don’t normally believe in those, but the majority of the symptoms pointed to girl. 062815_Campbell_027People with kids out there, did you choose to find out or wait until the baby was born? If you found out, how was it revealed to you?

 I’ll be back next week to give a pregnancy update and to talk about my feelings on finding out vs. waiting having now experienced it both ways. Have a great weekend!

For Two Fitness Review

*This post is sponsored by For Two Fitness. Even though for For Two Fitness sent me an item to review, all thoughts and opinions are my own.*

Since the belly officially “popped”, I have been on the search for workout pants that don’t cut into my middle causing unflattering and uncomfortable lines around my belly. I purchased a pair of maternity capri’s from Target a few weeks back, and they were okay. Something that would last me throughout my pregnancy.

For Two Fitness sent me the Ultimate Maternity Micro Plush Fitness Pant to try out. Since I am in LOVE with their tank tops, I had high hopes that these pants would be just as amazing.

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What I love most about these pants is that they can be worn 1 of 3 ways: Above the belly, below the belly , and mid-rise.

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I’ve worn the pants now to various barre classes and out for walks with Madelyn. I love the way these pants fit and they’re perfect for barre. One because the studio is air conditioned so I never felt too warm in these pants. And secondly, the flare leg on the pants is flattering  but yet they don’t get in the way too much during seat and thigh work. I have a few other flare-leg workout pants that get caught in the way of each other during certain workout moves.

As far as outdoor activities go, I will probably be living in these pants come fall. So far, we’re having a decent summer and with being pregnant I prefer shorts and tank tops for all outside workouts. Even though the pants breath pretty well, they are still fairly thick.

What I also like about these pants is that they can be worn even after pregnancy. The active capris I purchased from Target are cut to fit a pregnant body so they will fit differently after the baby is born. These can (and will) be worn after baby #2 arrives. That’s always I plus I look for when purchasing maternity clothes.

Overall I think these pants are great for air conditioned studios and cooler weather temps and I would definitely recommend them to any mama to be looking for good, quality workout gear to last her through pregnancy and beyond.

Pregnant mamas out there, what is your favorite, go-to piece of work out gear? Besides having properly fitted pants, I’ve been carrying around my hand held water bottle!

Friday Faves

Happy Friday friends! I cannot begin to tell you how happy I am to see this day. The whole week has been pretty great actually, so let’s get down to some of my favorites.
This quote. Every. Single. Word. A few weeks ago, I was listening to the Another Mother Runner Podcast and they had Kristin Armstrong on discussing her essay in their new book, Tales from Another Runner Mother. She read part of her essay that unfortunately got edited out of the book, but I was able to find it on their blog. When Madelyn was born, I had a hard time mentally getting back into a routine. I felt guilty leaving to go on a run or take time away from her to go workout. I shortly realized that on the days I did workout, I was a more patient and energized mom. I realize that she’s only little for so long, but I truly believe that the best thing for your kids to see, is their mom taking time and taking care of herself. No mom should ever feel guilty or be made to feel guilty for taking some time away from her children to focus on herself. When I went back to work, my mom said something that stuck with me “It’s not about the quantity of time, but the quality.”
kristinarmstrongquoteSparkly Soul headbands. I won a free one via an Instagram giveaway!! These are by far the best headbands for my hair. I’ve tried a lot of them, but nothing stays put as well as a Sparkly Soul headband. I wore one while I ran my last Chicago marathon and I never had to adjust it. Pretty awesome.
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Madelyn’s reaction to having her first ever root beer float. Summer is officially upon us in Milwaukee!
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Unplugging for the week. I’m leaving for a trip up north with my girlfriends this weekend and then turning around and heading somewhere else for an anniversary/babymoon with hubs next week, so I’ll be (trying to anyway) shutting down social media and enjoying some time with some of my favorite people. I MAY stop in Monday morning for the results of that baby reveal party!!
Seeing this little face for the first time! I’m so excited to find out whether the baby is a boy or girl with all of our family on Sunday but I cannot wait to hold and kiss this sweet little face!
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What are you loving this week? I’d also like to add that TRICARE is now offering free breast pumps to expecting moms and coverage for breastfeeding supplies!! Winning!

Challenge Accepted

At the beginning of the month, as I was leaving The Barre Code, my friend-instructor Jen asked me if I was participating in the Get Hot for Summer 2015 challenge (take 18 classes in 21 days & be entered to win a lot of very cool prizes!!!). Before I could even answer, she told me I was doing it.
The only challenge I’ve ever participated in at The Barre Code was the bingo challenge over the holidays because it involved both classes and fun holiday activities, like treating a friend to hot chocolate and making Christmas cookies. A “challenge” I could easily attain.
IMG_2892I usually take about 3-4 classes a week because with my work schedule and Larry’s work schedule that’s all I could fit in. Or so I thought. By participating in this challenge I would essentially be doubling my class load. I looked at my schedule for June and decided to go for. Challenge accepted.
I decided to take on the challenge because the past two summers I have dedicated my time and sacrificed my social life to marathon training. I was THRILLED when I found out I was pregnant with baby #2, but a part of me felt a little sad that I was going to have to “take it easy” this summer and take time off from training for anything for the rest of the year. I like setting goals for myself and achieving them, so the thought of doing nothing all summer really didn’t sit well with me. Enter this challenge and a new mindset: instead of wallowing, I decided to look at it as training for my delivery-which is definitely an athletic event in its own right.
How I made it work
*Each week, I fit 6 classes into my schedule. Luckily, I get an hour to workout that’s built into my work day (if the work gets done) so that helped out A LOT. Because of Larry’s schedule change I moved my normal night classes to morning classes. I’d drop Madelyn off at daycare at her normal time, but instead of heading to work right away, I went straight to The Barre Code. When we were in Chicago visiting Larry’s parents, I took advantage of trying out a new studio in Oak Park to get my 6th stamp for the week.
oakpark*I attended class 5 times a week, but one day a week I doubled up on classes.
*I found time in my schedule. The day I ran my 5k, I also signed up for a 9am barre class.
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*I scheduled my classes ahead of time. At The Barre Code, you have to cancel a class before the 4 hour mark in order not to get charged a $10 fee. Once I was within that 4 hour mark, I was committed. The only workout you regret is the one you didn’t do.
I completed 18 classes in 19 days. I took the last two days off from the challenge because I had a lot to get done around our house before we go out of town. I took 11 Barre Code Classes (strength training), 5 Interval Classes (cardio!), 1 TBC class in Oak Park (2 cardio blasts sandwiched between 30 minutes of strength training, and 1 Brawl class (cardio kickboxing). Overall, the challenge left me feeling strong, energized and fit in my ever growing body. The days I doubled up on classes, I noticed that my appetite was really high and naps were necessary. I enjoyed taking the cardio classes and modifying as I saw fit. I plan on writing a post on how I modified the classes throughout my pregnancy.
gethotchallengeNow that the challenge is over, my goal is to attend as many classes as my schedule allows me to (reasonably about 4-5 classes a week). I can’t wait to take on the next challenge which will probably be after the baby is born.
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What was the last fitness challenge you participated in? What was it? How do you find time to make fitness a priority in your life?

Pregnancy #2: Weeks 16-19

IMG_3731This second trimester has been extremely smooth sailing so far. For the most part I feel about 100% like my old self, just a tad more emotional than normal but other than that, I’m feeling good. I don’t remember being this emotional when I was pregnant with Madelyn but I’ve definitely had my fair share of crying this pregnancy: hubs new work schedule, going through Madelyn’s baby stuff, watching her fall asleep, and even toddler temper tantrums have all brought me to tears. The struggle is real my friends and I hope that this is one side effect that doesn’t stick around much longer.
Aversions: Still going strong with salmon. I made another attempt to eat it the other day, and I manage to get down a “Madelyn” sized portion of it. I now cover my hardboiled eggs in spicy brown mustard. They taste kind of like deviled eggs. A typical breakfast for me is two hard boiled eggs topped with spicy brown mustard along side a mound of fresh strawberries. Weird pregnancy food combinations at its best.
Cravings: WATERMELON! We’ve gone through 4 so far (it’s only June) and I’m pretty sure I’m the only one who’s eating it. Well, Madelyn and myself. Ice water. I’m at the stage in my pregnancy where my water has to be ice cold. Also, burgers. I could eat them for dinner every night if I allowed myself to.
watermelonWorkouts: Same as before. Running and barre. I’ve been going to all of the classes that The Barre Code has to offer to include the cardio classes and I want to do a post on how I’ve modified each class with my pregnancy. Running is starting to be hit or miss. It really all depends on the positioning of the baby at that moment. When I go out for a run and realize it’s a no go, I walk for the planned distance that day. (Usually about 3 miles).
Madelyn: She’s officially in her “big girl” room and it’s been…interesting. We’re back to fighting bedtime and her wanting one of us to lay with her until she falls asleep since now we can fit in her bed with her. The first night in her new room she went down like a dream. I knew it was too good to be true. So we’re working on it and trying different things to see what works best for her (and us) and going from there. If anyone has any tips or advice on how to get a toddler to fall asleep in her bed by herself, I would greatly appreciate it. The good news is that once she’s asleep, she stays in there all night. Even in the morning, she will call one of us to come get her when she’s awake and ready to start her day at 5:45am. She now wants both a brother and a sister. Sorry kiddo.
Energy: I wish the second trimester honeymoon phase lasted until delivery day because energy wise I feel great. I’m more than ready for bed at the end of the night and the day I decided to run the 5k then take barre after I was more than ready for an afternoon nap. But overall, I feel wonderful and I’m savoring every last bit of it because I know what’s ahead of me.
What’s new these past few weeks? My hips hurt at night. When I lay on one side for too long it starts to hurt and I wake up and have to switch over which usually prompts a bathroom trip. I have a snuggle pillow that helps a little bit. Now that it’s summer, I need to keep reminding myself that I’m pregnant. Yesterday I spent way too much time out in the sun doing stuff in the garden and with Madelyn. When we got done swimming yesterday, I ate a giant pretzel and felt much better. I also sat under a tree in the shade at the playground while Larry played with Madelyn…something I never do!
Things I’m looking forward to:
-Our 20 week ultrasound this week!
-Finding out the sex of our baby with our family
-My girls weekend trip
-An anniversary/babymoon getaway
-Feeling more frequent/stronger kicks. Hubs finally felt the baby move the other day and it was like the first time all over again. It was really cute. He had all these questions for me after :-) I can’t wait for Madelyn to feel/see the baby moving around in my belly.
-Getting the nursery set up. The positive about not finding out the sex of the baby the first time? Getting to reuse things like swaddling blankets and towels all over again. We also have a good amount of pajamas to get us started. Once we find out what baby #2 is, we will decorate the nursery accordingly. I don’t want Madelyn to go into the room and think that the baby took over her old room. Most things will stay the same, but I want to make it look as different as possible.
We’re having a little party with our family on Sunday to find out the baby’s sex. I was anti-finding out, but Larry wanted to know and we didn’t find out with Madelyn so I’m compromising. I agreed to it as long as we did it with our family in a fun way and not in the ultrasound room.
Cannot wait! Any guesses of we’re having? We’ve got a little bit of both according to the old wives tales.

Rock N Sole Run: 5k Recap

I’m alive! Our month has been extremely busy and I feel like we’re finally getting into the “swing” of our new schedule. I’m making the best of a “not so ideal” situation because it looks like it will be this way for awhile.

On Saturday I ran my first official 5k of the year. I signed up for the Rock N Sole run a while ago, while running was still feeling completely normal to me. I figured if race day approached and running didn’t feel great, I could at least manage to walk that distance.

I was a little nervous going into Saturday’s run because the last time I ran (June 3rd) it felt awful and I had to stop and walk about a mile into it. I tried switching to timed intervals of 2 minutes running one minute walking, but the baby wasn’t having it. The little one must’ve been positioned just so that running just didn’t feel good. So, we stopped to walk and my sciatic started bothering me.

I had no expectations with how this run was going to go. I figured I was going to have to stop and walk part of it but, much to my surprise, I finished it with no walking breaks in 31:46. Definitely not my fastest, but also not my slowest either. I’ll take it for being 4 1/2 months pregnant.

rns5kThe Rock n Sole run offers 3 distances: 5k, quarter marathon, and a half marathon. I’ve now run all three distances and the half marathon race was probably my favorite. The 5k comes in close second. The quarter marathon was just a tease distance for me.
3 medalsThe 5k course started at the south entrance of Summerfest and ran along the Summerfest grounds and the lakefront path. The 5k almost feels like a separate race from the quarter and half marathon since the start location is in a difference area. I parked a good distance away from the start and had to walk a few blocks through the area of where the start was for the longer races, and the energy was much more different. When I got to the 5k start, it was a bit more chill and felt a little isolated-kind of out in the middle of a giant parking lot. I loved the course, even though we didn’t get to run over The Bridge, but it got a little crowded when we got back on the running path near the art museum. It was a giant 3.2 mile loop and we ended where we started. Overall, it was a great run and the rainy, misty weather felt great once we got going. Had it been hot and sunny, I don’t think I would’ve made it without stopping. I had my handheld water bottle with me too (a running staple these days) and I think that helped. The positioning of the baby has a lot to do with how I’m feeling. When we first started running the baby was pressed up against my bladder so that every time I stepped, I felt like I had to pee. About 5 minutes in, the little one must’ve shifted because I felt good the rest of the race.

I was feeling so great after running my 5k, that I decided to take a 9am barre class after. I’m participating in a summer “Get Hot” challenge and completing 18 or more classes in 21 days. So far, I’ve completed 15 classes and I have until Sunday to get in the other 3. I’m trying to complete the challenge by Friday. Fingers crossed!

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Anyone complete any races lately where they did surprisingly well? The last 5k I ran was the Bacon Race last summer and I ended up setting a PR without even trying/training!
Race Day Outfit
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1. Moving Comfort Sports Bra-The best running sports bra ever known to woman!
2. For Two Fitness Tank-Running for Two. I love this tank. It fits perfectly and stays put. Too bad I had to keep a sweatshirt on the whole time because it was so cold out!
3. Flip Belt. Held my phone and important things like free Noodles coupons. I used this belt during the Chicago marathon and won’t ever go back. And it’s definitely not riding up these days over the belly so it stays put on my hips.
4. BeMaternity by Ingrid & Isabel from Target. The best maternity workout pants I have yet to find for a great price. While my leggings and yoga pants do fit, they all cut right into my waist giving the illusion that I am wearing pants that are too small for me. Not making me look pregnant, but just large. I like these pants because you can either have the band for under the belly or right over the belly. I will be purchasing more of these pants this weekend.